Genealogists on Twitter profile
Tell us a bit about your genealogy/family history journey
I first started researching my family history with my Dad when I was a teenager. Back then the records were all in hard copy or on microfilm, which meant travelling to different archives. Fast forward to 2010 and I started buying the magazine that accompanies the TV programme ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ I saw an advert for Ancestry so I did a trial and quickly became hooked. I’ve slowly built my tree back and sideways; the latter is especially important once you do a DNA test, as I did in 2017. More recently I’ve started writing a blog which I really enjoy. I wish I had more free time (I’m a wife, Mum and I work full-time) but family history is definitely my passion these days.
Favorite food or beverage
Asparagus with hollandaise sauce – heaven!
Surnames of interest
Bellamy, Bishop, Bowdler, Bracher, Brown, Denniss, Dyson, Entwistle, Evans, Ferris, Gough, Scoble, Squire, Tizard and Townend.
If you could meet one person from your family tree that died before you were born, who would it be and why?
It would have to be my great-great-grandmother, Harriet Dyson, nee Hutchinson (1827-1902). My great-grandfather’s birth certificate lists no father, so I’d love to ask her who it was. In the past couple of years DNA research has thrown up some fascinating leads, with lots of genetic cousins in the USA. Their first immigrant from England was from the town where my ancestors lived. I’m still working on it …
Genealogy pet peeve
People who leave ancestors as ‘living’ on their trees (and therefore private), even though they are many generations back and have clearly passed away.
Favorite place where you’ve traveled
Venice, Italy. Even when it’s cold and foggy it’s achingly beautiful, and very romantic.
From a genealogy/family history research perspective, what would you have done differently?
Without a doubt, I wish I’d discovered family history on Twitter earlier. I’d always viewed family history research as a pretty solitary hobby, but social media makes it so much more fun. These days I’m part of an amazingly friendly, helpful and supportive network of fellow enthusiasts, who range from professional genealogists to those for whom it’s just a hobby (like me).
What are you currently working on and what’s next?
I’m working on one of my Yorkshire lines, where I’ve discovered I’m related to someone I follow on Twitter – @sibsandnibs. I’m also chipping away at my big DNA mystery. In terms of what’s next I’ve got several new blog-posts in the pipeline, and these should appear over the coming months. But more than anything, my wish for 2022 is to be able to get back to attending family history conferences in person. There have been some amazing virtual events over the past couple of years, but I really look forward to meeting people face-to-face again.